5 more Suzhou Gardens Honored

Five traditional Chinese gardens - all in Suzhou - were added to UNESCO's World Heritage List at the World Heritage Committee's annual conference in Cairns, Australia, last month.

They are Canglang Pavilion Garden, Lion Forest Garden, Couple's Retreat Garden, the Retreat and Reflection Garden and the Garden of Cultivation.

The gardens joined four other Suzhou gardens which had been named earlier.

"We are proud of our gardens," said Xu Wentao, president of the Suzhou Green and Garden Bureau.

The Suzhou gardens illustrate classical Chinese design, which seeks to re-create natural landscapes in miniature.

"Dating from the 16th-18th centuries, Suzhou gardens reflect the profound metaphysical importance of natural beauty in Chinese culture in their meticulous design," the U.N. committee said in a statement.

This year, 71 properties from 43 countries and regions were considered for the list; 61 were named.

The World Heritage List was established under terms of The Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage adopted in November 1972 at the 17th General Conference of UNESCO.

Under the terms of the U.N. convention, every heritage site in the list should be protected by every country and region against any war or potential military conflict.

(Eastday.com 12/04/2000)

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